Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Leaving on a jet plane...

I'm off to ALA Annual in just over one week! Finally, something to write about other than the fact that I got a distinction in my first unit of the MBA (I know, I know, thanks for the flowers, couldn't have done it without you all not hassling me at all about the fact that I've not blogged in ages, really appreciate it...). Oh, and the abstract I submitted for NLS4 got accepted, which is super cool but I'm not even really going to think about it till after ALA.

So, ALA! Now, this is going to sound all colonial of me,'s kinda scary! For starters, it's MASSIVE! Last year there were 22,000 delegates. Isn't that just an insane number? How does one organise an event for that many people?

Second, it's not very user friendly (this may feed in to the above question). As a first timer, I'm supposedly meant to have some kind of contact before the event from an ALA Ambassador, which is a great idea, except that it hasn't happened. The programme...I really have some problems with the programme. There's all these streams, which is fine, except they all run at different times and they're in different venues (there are, after all, LOTS of people) and there doesn't seem to be a nice table that tells you what's on where. So I really have no idea what I'm doing, and I'm a bit of a seasoned conferencer (this will be number 11!)

Third, it's in America, which I've kind of been conditioned to be scared of in the last few years. I'm going to be fingerprinted before I'm allowed in. That's freaky. And it's in LA, which is also a bit scary.

But, much more than that it's exciting. I'm speaking! At ALA! And after it's all over Fiona and I are heading to Texas to stay in what looks like just about the hippest hotel around. They serve the room serve breakfast in bento boxes. I'm not sure I'm cool enough to stay there, but maybe I can wing it.

And there will be a couple of familir faces - Gill Hallam and Kevin Dudeney are both heading over, and I'll try to refrain from hugging them in excitement when I manage to find them amongst the 22,000 (I mean, I know them and all, but not THAT well).

So, wriggling like a puppy, I have 8 more sleeps. The paper is pretty much done, I've got a brand spanking new suitcase (thank you Myer mid-year sale), I'm ready to go. I promise to write about it. I don't promise to make sense.

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